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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  September 17, 2013 4:00pm-5:01pm PDT

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on. we're not talking about one or two statements that he might have made 30 years ago. and asked for forgiveness. his whole career was that. so why would cruz say we need a hundred more and more importantly joseph is right why won't responsible republicans repudiate it like they did when we saw strom thurmon being praised? that would be the right thing to do on the right. thanks for watching, i'm al sharpton. "hardball" starts right now. why? let's play "hardball." ♪ good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let me start with this tonight, the mass killing in washington where we're still looking for a motive and explanation of how the shooter got this kind of
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access. later in the show we'll get to the power of women in the democratic party. does defeat of larry sommers mean they have veto power? and does the russians on syria prove obama is down right lucky and the right is to weaken the economy? pete williams first, we have 12 people murdered. do we know more on the motive? >> reporter: i think the motive will take several more days to try to figure out, chris. we are learning more about precisely what was going through apparently the mind of aaron alexis. and it is clear why officials were saying in the last 12 hours or so that his condition was rapidly deteriorating. we know that just last month he called the police in newport, rhode island, where he was working at a contractor up there. he told them he had checked into a hotel after being in two other hotels and moving around because he said he kept hearing voices
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coming out of the walls or the ceilings or the closet in these rooms. and he was trying to get away from the voices. he thought they were people that were following him. he worried that the voices were people that would cause him harm. he said somebody was using what he called a microwave machine against him to send vibrations that were disturbing his sleep. shortly after that he sought treatment for psychiatric problems at a va hospital. now, that was just last month. then he comes down to washington, d.c., some time in late august. starts working at this naval facility and then drives in yesterday with -- carrying a shotgun in a bag, we're told. that's how he got it past security. he had a valid pass as a contractor to get into the navy yard and into the building. we're told that he went up to the fourth floor, went inside the men's room, pulled the shotgun out, started firing.
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>> did we know how he would get through clearance? if you get a job with the navy, that you would have to go through a character reference. people saying he's okay. somebody, previous employer, somebody saying this guy's a good guy, he's reliable, he'll do the job. who did that? >> well, by the way, the people we understand law enforcement have talked to have said they never had any complaints about his work. that he seemed to be doing well on the job. although friends of his in texas said he would sometimes complain that the government wasn't paying him enough. that he wasn't getting the respect he thought he deserved, that he was a victim of racism. the clearances, jim miklaszewski at the pentagon said he got his clearance in 2008. that sounds like a big deal and it is unless you consider that about 5 million people have a secret clearance. so it's a low level secret
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clearance. it's good for ten years. now, he had had one run-in with the police in 2008 when he got the clearance. four years earlier he had a run-in with police when he shot the tires out of a car. but he was never convicted and had two other run-ins in georgia and texas. none of those ended in convictions. so either the military at the time he got his clearance in 2008 either wasn't concerned or wasn't aware of that encounter in seattle, and then the additional run ins don't jeopardize the clearance and the va tells us that it would have been illegal to report he sought psychiatric treatment. so he kept his clearances. then when he went to work for the prooit contractor, they verified he had the clearance, but they were accurately told that he did. now, a couple of members of congress are now saying we need to look at this, he should have never have gotten those
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clearances. the secretary of the navy today is ordering an investigation on how security clearances are granted and reviewed. so it certainly has become sort of a main point about this case, about how he was able to get that pass that allowed him onto the naval yard and into that building. >> it's so amazing he had all these psychiatric problems, you know, imagining people -- paranoid behavior you'd call it. if people are getting in your head electronically. anyway, thank you, pete, for joining us tonight. pete williams of nbc news. joining me now is ron reagan and brian levin. ron, thank you for coming on. by the way, the press conference today dr. janis orlowski, chief operator of medstar had moving words about the type of violence here. this is something to remember.
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>> there is something evil in our society that we as americans have to work on to try and eradicate. there's something wrong here when we have these multiple shootings, these multiple injuries, there's something wrong. the only thing i can say is we have to work together to get rid of it. i'd like you to put my trauma center out of business. >> dr. orlowski was asked about that statement on the "today" program. let's watch. this is "today" today. >> i just spoke from the heart. i am sick of this. and i must have touched a chord in america. i've had a number of people who've called, who've e-mailed, who've twittered. and they're sick like i am of this senseless violence. >> ron, this country -- you know, i don't know whether we talk about gun control like we go to the battle stations either
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pro second amendment or urging the need for gun safety laws. and yet we know there's something else out there. i mean, looking at the stats today. over 30% of the people who were killed in this country are not killed with firearms. there's a rage. >> that's right. there is. the "it" she referred to here is what is this "it"? why are we such a violent nation? contrast our murders per year with great britain where they had 39 gun murders. we had 11,000 gun murders. if they were our size they'd have 240. but still 240 versus 11,000. we always look to guns. this gun or that gun or violent movies and violent video games. but those are symptoms. the cause, the "it" she referred to, the underlying one is the thing we need to address here. >> well, what do you think?
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>> i don't know. i don't have the answer to what that "it" is but we're an extremely violent society. right from the top so the bottom. from the foreign policy to the lowest basis entertainment, we're thrilled by violence and death. it's infected our entire society. >> brian, what is it? because i think there's a plus side to our cowboy mentality. i love our independence and the freedoms in this country. we enjoy them from our birth right. what is this dark side that makes us want to kill people? so many people want to kill so many people. in fact, they want to kill a lot of people at once. fast. >> yeah. i think you've hit on it. and look. >> what is it? >> well, i think it's accessibility, not the u bikty, but the accessibility of firearms to troubled people who either from cognitive issues or who are angry and shouldn't have
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these. we also have a problem with people detached from communities and the institutions we used to be close to. schools and churches and things like that. we have to treat mental illness better. and also the media -- the media glorifies outrageous behavior and we make folk heroes out of people like the spree killer we had in southern california. >> what are we going to have daily inspections of people? people are allowed to be loners in this country. you can live on a cash economy. you don't have to have a checkbook or credit card or cell phone. you can live freely if you want to or by yourself. are we going to check up on every loner on if they ought to be seeing someone because they might shoot at everybody? this guy was showing up for work. we just learned that. he was doing his job 40 hours a week. and yet on the weekends or whatever, he was going up to hotels thinking people were chasing him. and that was leading up to this breakdown that led to the horror of the other day.
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how do we stop that? >> well, i think mr. smerconish who was on earlier made a good point. look, we have information out there. you have to register to get a driver's license and drive a car. if you're going to get a security clearance and a firearm, at least there should be some reasonable regulations. and of the kind that president reagan pushed back when he was president could not get passed today. so magazine size is important. and semiautomatic handguns. we tend to concentrate on ar-15s and that sort of thing. even among the mass killings, semiautomatic handguns are the most common. i think reasonable regulation and addressing mental illness, some waiting periods could do a lot. but let's remember that even as murders and violent crime has declined over the last 20 years, almost half, mass murders have not. that tells there's something very wrong here. >> the sick thing here -- i
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don't want to use the word sick. the coincidence of these guns available where you can shoot pow pow pow pow pow and you can shoot a lot of people really fast like in newtown. and this impulse of rage. let's get then rage over with fast. let's do a lot of shooting and spraying in this urge that seems to go with the fire power. that's what's freightening about it. people they don't know. >> one of the smartest things we could do is impose some waiting period for purchasing a gun. so you can't just go out, background check or no, and just buy a gun right away. you should have to wait a couple of weeks before you take delivery of that gun. you know? what's wrong with that? we're not saying you can't have the gun, but what's wrong with waiting? maybe they wouldn't be so rage filled by the time they took possession of their weapon. and limit the magazine size. >> going back to you, brian.
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back when bobby kennedy was shot and killed. i wrote a letter to my congressman. nothing happened. not just because i wrote one but i imagine hundreds of thousands others wrote letters. something really stops us from gun safety measures. what is it? you tell me. you've got a minute here. what causes us to avoid real gun safety measures which ron says are common sense in any other culture? >> because we have lobbying groups like the nra which even go against their own memberships. these are real regulations and what the groups say obama is getting your guns. forget it. and even scalia said the right to bear arms while individual does not mean you have the right to any type of firearm at any time. magazine size reductions and waiting periods are reasonable regulations that congress should
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take the word of the american people on and they won't because it's done on a district by district basis where the nra pumps a lot of money in. >> you can argue that. here's what i say. people say like they teachers, don't like teachers unions but the unions are representing the teachers. they say apac is too hard lined yet the people support apac. and i think the people who buy guns support the nra. you can say what you want about the leaders, but they're leaders for a reason. because people follow them. these groups are professional. they know what they're doing. the hearts and minds of the gun owners are with these guys. like wayne lapierre. you don't have to like a guy. >> they're playing on the fear and distrust we have in the government. the government isn't us, it's an alien being. >> i agree with that. >> the american public isn't in favor of the regulations even reagan wanted. >> they're playing on male insecurity too. a lot of insecure men out there
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feel their manhood depends on a bigger and bigger weapons. think about cowboys. the cowboys came into town and refused as the regulations required to turn their guns in to the sheriff while they were in town. that was a common law back in the 19th century in the wild west. >> was that burt lancaster or ronald reagan which one of those guys? >> i think it was burt lancaster. >> okay. thank you very much, ron reagan. and thank you brian levin for joining us with a sad tragic situation we still have in this country. coming up, back to politics luckily. larry summers withdrawal tells me one thing. politically active women in this country. politically active women may now have veto power in the democratic party. maybe. plus the luck of obama, that deal between the united states and russia to safeguard syria's
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chemical weapons means president obama avoids a war he didn't want to fight and it saved him from a political defeat in the congress. think about luck. and how should the president deal with the coming war with those on the right that wants to send the economy and government into tail spin by defaulting on the debt. and a campaign ad where a state rep comes out to his father. politically. >> i'm carl sortino. and i'll never forget that conversation with my dad. >> that's me. >> where i had to come out and tell me -- >> wait for this. >> -- that i was a massachusetts liberal. >> and he's proud of it. >> much more on that in the sideshow tonight. and this is "hardball," presidents. is something we all share. but who can help you find your own path? who can build you a plan, not just a pie chart? who can help keep your investments on course,
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whatever lies ahead? that someone is a morgan stanley financial advisor. and we're ready to work for you. the washington nationals took the field today just away from the navy yard. they played in a makeup game originally scheduled for last
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night. before the first pitch, both teams observed a moment of silence in remembrance of the victims of the shooting. [ silence ] ♪ [ male announcer ] 1.21 gigawatts. today, that's easy. ge is revolutionizing power. supercharging turbines with advanced hardware and innovative software. using data predictively to help power entire cities. so the turbines of today... will power us all... into the future. ♪ ♪ we go, go, we don't have to go solo ♪
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the perception that mr. summers might have an inside track simply had to do with a bunch of attacks that i was hearing on mr. summers preem preemptively that i don't like. i tend to defend folks who i think have done a good job and don't deserve attacks. >> welcome back to "hardball." there's no such thing as a shoe-in in washington. larry summers came in as close
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as it could get. summers was clearly president obama's top choice to run the federal reserve. as you saw in that clip, however, the president's been a vocal defender of summers. overseas newspapers were even reporting he would be named to the fed as early as today. but a growing opposition of liberal democrats led first by women had other ideas. majority of female democrats in the house came out against summers favoring janet yellin who holds the number two spot at the federal reserve. influential senators like elizabeth warren also moved a block over the nomination. and grassroots groups lobbied against him calling him a sexist for comments he made in 2005 when he said biological differences explained why women were underrepresented in certain feels. in the special kags of science and engineering, there are issues of intrinsic aptitude. the collateral damage of those
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words may have been too great to overcome. yesterday president obama announced summers had removed his name from nomination. kathleen and ed rendell. i'm going to let ladies first here, because that's what the topic is. i don't think it's the only reason. there's a lot of question marks, a lot of them about deregulation, about his guilt with the shutdown five years ago and everything else. but when we heard in the beginning after coming out of harvard, he was president of harvard one day. next day he wasn't because of those words. >> that's right. and i at the time defended him, and i still think he was treated unfairly. i'm a believer in allowing people to say things they may later retract. have we ever said anything we regretted? never. i think maybe he misstated. he later said he did. look. there are lots of ways to say men and women have different interests. they are different inclinations. there's no question. >> aptitudes. >> well, intrinsic aptitudes was
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a poor choice of words. he's now the paula deen of womens politics. i think it will always be held against him. he's recognized that and decided to throw in the towel. >> you think he got a bad wrap? >> i think it was unfair. it was 2005. i'm a big advocate of hiring the best person for the job. yellin may be for other reasons the right choice, but i think it was wrong to disqualify him on that basis alone. it was a form of fascism i disapprove of. >> ed rendell, if you look at the numbers the group that dominates the democratic party are women. let's look at the number here. i think this is a fair number. constituency politics is fair politics. in 2012 obama among men only got 45%. the other guy would have -- rather 45% he only got. the other guy got 52%.
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somebody was voting for the other. the fact of the matter is mitt romney would be president right now if it was just men voting. first of all, governor, explain why women vote democrat more than republican. and why that is a legitimate reason to be concerned about political opinion by womens groups which was out there on the larry summers front. >> no question. first of all, the president got more than six out of ten of his votes were cast by women. women tend to vote democrat, one, because democratic policies on family issues like child care, like education tend to be more family friendly. generally, and obviously there are exceptions. secondly, the republican party has made or members of the republican party have made some terrible mistakes in state legislatures throughout the country, individual republican candidates for senate and for the house have made statements which make at least it clear to
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some women that the republican party doesn't have the better interest of women at heart. now, that may not be the agenda of the party as a whole, but if you look at state legislature after state legislature what's gone on in this so-called war against women, it is not farfetched for a woman to conclude that a republican party are not hospitable to their interests. >> suppose were to say i don't think she can do the job. because she's not as good at math and budgeting is a good job at governor. do you think that guy would have a chance of getting re-elected? you smile, but these things are almost terrible to do with that. >> i don't think summers was saying there was an intelligence mistake. if you talk about the executive
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afacebook, she sings his praises and said he's worked for women. i think you have to also -- you have to balance the words out with the deeds. i'm just saying. you can't say things like that and get away with it, clearly. >> look what happened with democra democrats. this is the other part of the economy. the womens issues, the economy has become a womans issue. pelosi unveiling her agenda for women and families. here she is. >> we the members of congress are so proud to announce an economic agenda for women and famili families. when women succeed, america succeeds. it is about unleashing the power of our nation's women and in doing so strengthening the middle class, the backbone of our democracy. >> is the democratic party incapable of saying an economic
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move for both parties. >> by the way, this is what -- >> is this pandering? >> of course it's pandering. >> you said it i didn't. >> pelosi wants her house back. and the democratic party is hostage to these women because are you going to say no to nancy pelosi? no. didn't she handle health care nicely? yes. this line about women -- excuse me. when women succeed the country succeeds, this is what we preach all around the world in developing nations. it's a very smart argument. and it also happens to have -- >> governor, it's a funny question. i expect a funny answer here. you may take this serious. do you think if larry summers has an iq of 170 or so, said women are smarter in areas than men, do you think he would have gotten in trouble with the men? >> first of all, because it's
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true, larry. chris, it's true. >> chris. >> women are much better at certain tasks than men. >> women are better at multitasking. they think two things at the same time. >> they're much more focused. if you give me a man and a woman of equal intelligence, i take the woman. because women are better at carrying out tasks, getting things done, dedication to the tasks. that's a statement of fact. look, i think kathleen is right. i think kathleen's the smartest conservative in america. and i think she's right about what she says. >> talk about pandering. >> there you go. but i think she's right when she says that larry summers should not be judged on that one statement. he should be judged on the totality of what he did with women. and i'd be interested in hearing cheryl samberg say larry summers has ultimate respect for women.
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he respected me. he respected other women in the workplace. i think that's important. i think we've gotten too hung up on one statement taken out of context. and by the way, that's an idiotic statement. that's about as dumb a statement to use those two words in. and you focus on those words. he said aptitude. you know, kathleen, he said aptitude. no getting around that. dumb, dumb, dumb. >> girls seem to have an intrinsic aptitude for reading and writing schools where boys are suffering in schools. we would not reject that. we want to explore and figure if it's true and fix it. >> thank you. by the way, women are better at consensus. my deal here is the limited time. thank you. welcome to ha"hardball." >> thank you. i'm so excited about this. >> we'll talk about that a lot in the next few weeks. up next, we've got the great
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new campaign out there with the liberal comes out to his tea party father. that's next in the sideshow. this is "hardball," the place for politics. to know if we can pick her up. yeah, we can make room. yeah. [ male announcer ] ...office space. yes, we're loving this communal seating. it's great. [ male announcer ] the best thing to share? a data plan. at&t mobile share for business. one bucket of data for everyone on the plan, unlimited talk and text on smart phones. now, everyone's in the spirit of sharing. hey, can i borrow your boat this weekend? no. [ male announcer ] share more. save more. at&t mobile share for business. ♪ geothe last thing i want iswho. doesnto feel like someone is giving me a sales pitch, especially when it comes to my investments. you want a broker you can trust. a lot of guys at the other firms seemed more focused on selling than their clients. that's why i stopped working at my old brokerage and became a financial consultant with charles schwab.
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turning dreamers into business owners. and we're here to help start yours. back to "hardball." time for the sideshow. democrat carl sciortino is running for the house representatives seat in massachusetts. the 35-year-old candidate who was opening gay released a clever ad that co-stars his father. got to see this one. >> i'm carl sciortino. i'll never forget that conversation with my dad. >> that's me. >> where i had to come out and tell him -- >> wait for this. >> -- that i was a massachusetts liberal. >> and he's proud of it. >> dad's in the tea party. >> damn right. >> here's me one that drives him crazy. >> he wants to go to the congress and take on the nra and
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the tea party. >> i won't give up on an assault weapons ban. and also equal rights for, well, everybody. >> he's been like this for 35 years. >> it's why i approved this message, and i still love you, dad. >> me too, son. >> wow. we have them both on "hardball" thursday. carl sciortino jr. and sr. here together. be sure to catch us thursday. vladimir putin may have saved on syria. but known for his strong arm tactics. republican congressman dana rohrabacher told his story about a match. >> we all ended up going to this irish times pub afterwards, and we were having a little bit too much to drink i guess. but anyway we started arguing about who won the cold war, et cetera, and so we decided to
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settle it like men do when they've had too much to drink in the pub. so we got down to these arm wrestling matches. and i ended up being paired off with putin. and he's a little guy, but boy, i'll tell you. he put me down in a millisecond. >> wow. what a strange story. up next, the story in syria between russia. is this yet another case of the luck of obama? put an apostrophe in obama there. i think he is lucky. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics. the middle of this special moment and i need to run off to the bathroom. ♪ i'm fed up with always having to put my bladder's needs ahead of my daughter. ♪ so today, i'm finally talking to my doctor about overactive bladder symptoms. [ female announcer ] know that gotta go feeling? ask your doctor about prescription toviaz.
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president obama is pushing for tougher background checks after the massacre at the washington navy yard. in an skber view with telemundo he says there are laws that need to be passed to prevent this tragedy. about 600 are still waiting to be evacuated.
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eight people have died. and wiring damage by superstorm sandy is blamed for the massive fire that destroyed the boardwalk in new jersey. back to "hardball." is this commander in chief and this was the whole debate a week ago, he said i'm going to strike militarily without the u.n., without congress. now, whether that's a good policy or not, but you know, this is stabilization by accident and maybe another case of obama good luck. >> obama good luck. welcome back to "hardball." that was "the washington post" bob woodward talking about the breakthrough with syria's chemical weapons. the accidental diplomacy appears to have rescued the american president from embarrassment. look at these poll numbers released today. shows an overwhelming amount of
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americans support the russian plan. with an all but certain defeat in congress awaiting the president, the deal may have saved the president from a political defeat. but it's also what the american people want. congresswoman donna edwards is a maryland democrat and richard wolffe is the executive editor of msnbc.com and author of the book "the message: the reselling of president obama." richard, take the first shot at this. i think there is certain amounts of luck. there's bad luck. i've been to vegas. you can have long streaks of bad luck. this president looks like he was really in a corner in the campaign at certain points and certainly now with regard to syria. where nobody wanted to go to wa for on the left or right it seems expecept a few in the middle. and yet he got out of it. they don't want to go into the
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zone even if they don't collect all the chemical weapons. >> this president created a lot of bad luck. he boxed himself in with his whole congressional vote. he didn't have to do that. and he got a stroke of luck in pulling himself out there. and frankly so did john kerry. one thing that isn't lucky is seizing the opportunity. they did seize the opportunity to help themselves out of this mess. a mess again partly of their own creation. but they have stumbled their way into a much better position. what's striking is if you have a policy that is ending up in the right place and you cannot communicate that, does that remind you of anything? it's like health care. you've got massive support for the individual pieces of the policy, but overall people don't get it. it's like the recovery act. this is a path we have seen time and again with this president. the real question is why. >> let me ask you, congresswoman, you know there's such a thing or maybe you don't. luck. this fella, the president who i
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like, generally speaking certainly like. and i have to tell you i didn't know where he was going a few days ago. i saw him walking into the jaws of defeat before the united states house and maybe even the senate. and what do you know? the secretary of state drops a line about if they give up all their weapons, lavrov goes along with it, and we all of a sudden have a deal with the russians. we haven't had a deal with the russians in decades, it seems. >> i don't know about the luck quotient. what i do know is that the frame work -- the idea for this deal has been in the works for about two years, it's just that russia never, ever, ever came to the table to say we're going to move forward on it. i think to the extent that the president may have, you know, stumbled into it definitely the groundwork was laid over two years. i look, for example, at the organization for the prohibition of chemical weapons that enforces the chemical weapons ban. for more than two years where the united states is a member of the kmektive council, they've been pressing syria to do
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exactly what it has done. and so i'm glad that the president frankly was able to take advantage of a good opportunity. and i think frankly that it was the threat -- the credible threat of force that the president put on the table that brought us to the point that we are. >> do you agree with that? i'm not sure i do, richard. i didn't think there was a credible threat of force. because anyone reading the american newspapers knew that the congress was unlikely to give him that power to use those weapons. do you think it was the credible threat of weaponry and attack that got the russians involved and got the syrians to play ball for a couple days there? >> i don't think there's any question. but it wasn't the credible threat of force that the president had in mind when he said at least before he was going to go for the vote. there was going to be a missile strike. they were going to take action. and so if you're going to build this up as a credible threat of force, you'd of done it differently. if you were going to rely on the russians paving the way for two years, i'm sure those conversations were happening. but you don't cancel a summit
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for a russian leader if you're going to work with him. they have stumbled their way into a good position. you have to be honest. it didn't have to be this painful. it's like the pennsylvania primary all over again. it didn't have to be this dragged out and this painful. >> i agree it didn't have to be this painful, that's for sure. but i'm glad we've gotten where we are. >> me too. numbers over the new "washington post" poll today, they were closer. 47% say the threat of force brought syrians to the table. here we are, congresswoman, still in a position with the american people -- this makes the case about luck. that people don't now even if the syrians don't collect weapons, americans still don't want to attack. >> i think that's true. but i think this is where it's going to require a lot of presidential leadership. i know i have been having town hall meetings and conversations with my district about this
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issue. who would have thought. but the fact is that's what has to happen with the american people. we are wary and weary. wary of the russians and weary of war. we'll see what happens over this next week and a really compressed time frame for syria to do its part and for the russians to help them do it whether or not we have to put this back on the table again. and i think what the president knows is that he wants to keep up our force posture in the region to make certain that syria and russia both are at the table really to play ball. >> i still don't think we should attack. thank you. good luck with the new book. up next, what president obama needs to do to deal with the right wing bent on destroying the country just to spite him it seems. this is "hardball," the place for politics.
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two weeks from now a fond look back to when politics worked in this country. the publication of my first person account of tip o'neill's battle with reagan. it was my own coming of age when i discovered the difference between a speaker and president right there in the back rooms of the u.s. capitol. it's where i learned most of what i know about how this country is actually run. tip and the gipper. when politics worked coming october 1st. that's why there'se to help replenish key eye nutrients. ocuvite has a unique formula not found in your multivitamin to help protect your eye health. ocuvite. help protect your eye health.
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and just for good measure, an incredibly efficient 40 mpg highway. so that when you're doing more, you're spending less. the all-new nissan versa note. your door to more. ♪ your door to more. a writer and a performer. ther, i'm also a survivor of ovarian and uterine cancers. i even wrote a play about that. my symptoms were a pain in my abdomen and periods that were heavier and longer than usual for me. if you have symptoms that last two weeks or longer, be brave, go to the doctor. ovarian and uterine cancers are gynecologic cancers. symptoms are not the same for everyone. i got sick... and then i got better. welcome back to "hardball." the right wing of the republican party is threatening to tank not just the u.s. economy but the
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world economy in their endless quest to nullify president obama's signature achievement the affordable care act. in the coming weeks we're going to see how reckless these republicans can get. jack lew described what a dangerous game they're playing. >> some in congress seem to think they can keep us from failing to pay our nation's bills by raising the debt ceiling right before the moment our cash balance is depleted. trying to time a debt limit increase to the last minute could be very dangerous. make no mistake, if congress does not act and the u.s. can suddenly not pay bills, the repercussions could be serious. >> even the wall street journal today said these republicans are on a suicide mission noting their demand is that the house pair the must pass or the debt limit with defunding the health care bill. kamikaze missions rarely turn out well, least of all for the pilots. the problem is these republican kamikaze pilots, so-called, have all of us in the jump seat.
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chuck todd is nbc news correspondent and host on msnbc. and chuck, i want to start with you. i was with jack lew's speech today at the economic club in washington. his message repeated over and over again. falling on the national debt of this country is not an option. it's just going to cause economic horror. >> i know that's his message and the problem, the message disconnect is for a lot of these conservative republicans, the ones that want to use the debt ceiling as leverage, the ones that want to go after the health care law, use both the budget resolution and the debt ceiling to do this, there is not a political penalty for them in their districts for doing this. in fact, there is a political
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penalty if they don't. if they don't seem, if they seem to be capitulating to the elites or to the establishment or just assuming that, well, because jack lew says it's so it's so. >> where are the cataclysms and markets dropping in tokyo because we can't pay our debts anymore? >> for some of those folks, it may take the actual market to use -- to use the markets as a sledgehammer for boehner to finally find the votes in the house republican conference. it may take a shut down, a default, a couple of days or a couple of weekends to react or not react. because right now these guys don't see any political penalty. in fact the political penalty they see is not standing their ground on these issues. >> in politics, you need a way
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out, you need a trap door, you need to give your enemy a way out. does boehner have the way out here? you have the obama people in the center and left, they're living in totally different worlds. >> he has no way out. one possible way out is whether he wants to serve as speaker or be in the house down the road after the selection. i don't think he's done that. if he decided to, look, i'm i want to retire, it's important that we get our fiscal house in order, we' order -- i think he has not made up his mind with what he wants to do with his political future. and there isn't an obvious good option. summer of 2011, everyone said don't come up close to the debt -- >> it didn't stop the government
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from paying -- >> we don't know yet, because, look, we have seen the farm bill. >> okay. >> the fiscal cliff, there's less impact clearly, but we have seen boehner sort of undermine and unable to deliver. the question is there a deal that can be cut that says yes, i can bring along x number of republicans and deliver on it, past evidence maybe not. >> president obama wants the government to go into default. here he is he was with hugh hewitt, what a meeting of the minsds that was. >> i don't think the company realize that we're on the brink of a shutdown orchestrated by the president. >> yeah, i think you're exactly right. i think he wants this thing to happen, a shutdown of the government. i'm totally cynical on the thing. i think that's exactly what he wants. i in fact think he's got a bunch of democrats that are sick and tired of it as well because
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they're sitting in red states an they're nervous as anything that they're going to get stuck with obamacare and then they're going to have to go out there and defend it. i think it's going to be a problem in the end, though, hugh for the democrats. >> does he think people are as stupid as that argument? th to say that democrats want to -- they have finally delivered health care. they don't want to trash it, they don't want to dump it into the trash can of history. yet the republicans do. why would he make up this ma malarkey of how democrats and -- >> any shutdown they're going to get blamed for. any default they're going to get blamed for. they're trying to soften the blow with their base and these things. i want to go back to something,
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when it comes to boehner and he negotiating style, he basically blinked, he said, fine, we will negotiate over to debt ceiling. i'll give you this. and that's what boehner is counting on, that if he lumps it all together, debt ceiling, budget resolution and frankly sequestration year two all in one place, that the president will blink, that he will be the responsible adult in the room. i don't think blink this time. i think the president is going to call his bluff. >> bluff them, tell them no deal, it's like berlin, don't give it away. we'll be right back. la's known definitely for its traffic,
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congestion, for the smog. but there are a lot of people that do ride the bus. and now that the buses are running on natural gas, they don't throw out as much pollution into the air. so i feel good. i feel like i'm doing my part to help out the environment. ♪ unh ♪ [ male announcer ] you can choose to blend in. ♪ or you can choose to blend out. the all-new 2014 lexus is.
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let me finish tonight with this. earlier tonight we discussed the real possibility that president barack obama benefits from that elusive quality called luck. when i see what the right wing faction in the house of representatives and it's corporals guard in the senate is up to, i think there's a case to be made for just that. something that appears on the horizon, the one force that could unite the democrats, send them to the rachbd parts, threatening democrats with a default on the federal debt, a threat that would become real if they don't kill the affordable health care act.
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this is the business sar reality that lies behind the events coming in october. by pushing to kill the affordable health care act, they are pushing to kill the obama presidency. and that attempt could cost them their one chance to change history. thanks for being with us, all in with chris hayes starts right now. . good evening, from new york. i'm chris hastes, tonight we know the names of the victims of our latest national mass shooting nightmare. this time it was 12 adults eating breakfast beginning their workdays and this time the national response has been reduced to the one thing the country's political leaders seem capable of pulling off, a moment of silence, just as they have done every single time we have faced this horror.

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